Finnish School System vs the UK

Finnish School System vs the UK

The Finnish school system is worlds apart from our current UK system. Are we in a position to be able to implement these kinds of changes in the UK?

The Finnish school system is worlds apart from our own but can we learn from this system? Can we make changes to our own education system and produce the same results?

Questions like these are asked about our current education system all the time. We are told that more children leave primary school unable to read than ever before. Exams are getting easier and our schools are oversubscribed and unable to cope. We have an increasing shortage of teachers and many that do teach hate the politics they have to endure! So where next?

There are no standardised tests

There are no standardised tests for children. The matriculation exam is the only mandatory test and it is set at the end of Vocational Senior High School. While in the UK children from the age of 6 are tested for their academic abilities.

Many say that without this testing system that we have in the UK it would be impossible for teaching staff to assess a childs progress. But the figures from Finland show a very different story. Their figures show that Finlands education system is far superior to that of the UK with 66% of students attending university and 93% of students graduating from High School.

Teachers have to be highly qualified

Finnish teachers have to sit a Masters degree before they are allowed to step into a classroom. Teachers are picked from the top 10% of the highest achieving graduates and because of this, they are given far more respect. Society grants them the same status as other professions, such as Doctors and Lawyers.

There are also many routes into teaching in the UK, with such shortages in qualified teachers this does seem to be quite a sensible option. But does that mean that our teachers are less qualified? Is children’s education severely impacted by a lack of quality?

Teachers have more freedom in the classroom

Teachers in the UK have to follow a strict curriculum with very little if any room for experimenting or change. This is one of the issues that teachers have is the lack of flexibility in the current curriculum that they teach.

The curriculum in Finland is less structured, there are no set texts and as the children are not tested there are no exams to teach towards. Lesson plans allow for greater flexibility and teachers are given complete control with regard to how they teach.

Another reason that Finland appears to lead the way is that because their teachers have such strong academic backgrounds they are fully supported. Their education system is not political so there are no boundaries to schools or teachers using experimental teaching techniques.

Homework isn’t widely used

It is not the case that there is no homework given in Finnish schools there is just significantly less of it than in British schools. In Finland, most of their education happens in the classroom which limits the amount of homework to begin with.

Due to parents knowing that their children are being taught by some of the most educated people in society, they fully support and back the teaching staff. This then means that time would otherwise be spent doing homework is spent building relationships with family and friends.

Children do not start school until they are 7 years old

Children do not start formal schooling until they are 7 years old. This is one of the biggest differences between the Finnish school system and the UK. Up until that time, they will usually attend a preschool, which 97% of children attend. Their preschools are also free to all!

This preschool time is all about learning through play, socialising rather than any academic learning. Now, this sounds very much like the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) and Foundation Phase that has been introduced in both England and Wales. The basic principles of these new curricula are learning through play rather than fixed academic lessons.

Finnish system in the UK feasible or not?

The Finnish education system could not be easily implemented in the UK. But that does not mean that it should be completely discounted. After all, the education of our children and generations to come should be the top priority.

Small changes are still changes and can be put in place with the least disruption. Could this be the way to repair our own education system? It could be the difference between us having a generation of thinkers, entrepreneurs, and problem-solvers or not!

Our Education system is broken, can it be repaired?

Our Education system is broken, can it be repaired?

The UK has an education system that appears to be broken. Is it able to continue as it is or does it need to be redesigned taking influence from europe.

The British education system was once the envy of many countries. Is this still the case for a system that appears to be failing our children! What other options are available to us? Do we need to look elsewhere for reform and inspiration?

An Education System that is failing

As parents, choosing the schools that our children attend is one of the hardest decisions that we have to make. We are potentially determining their educational path for the rest of their lives. We are determining the opportunities that will be available to them and the culture, friends, and obstacles that they encounter.

Our education system can’t really be that bad, can it? GCSE grades continue to rise steadily across the UK, even amidst claims that the exams are getting easier. Exam regulators have been quick to state that exam pass rates don’t increase greatly because exam standards are kept the same across the board.

With reports that GCSE exams are getting easier, are we not taking away from all the hard work that our children put in. The endless hours of revising and coursework. The stress and worry they endure. Not to mention the extra hours that school staff gives up to ensure that each of our children reaches their full potential.

In the past few years, there have been claims that many children are leaving primary school unable to read. But is this the fault of schools or parents? Teaching a child to read should surely, for the most part, be the parents’ responsibility and not that of our oversubscribed schools and overworked teaching staff.

Other options available in education systems

There are other options available to us as parents. Some are not practical for many parents but there are some that show promise.

Homeschooling is an option that is available in the UK. I have to be honest, in my opinion, I do not agree with homeschooling and believe that children need to be in a school environment with their peers. This helps them with their social skills and gives them the opportunity to experience activities that they would not be able to if homeschooled. But I do have mum friends who either are or intend to take this route with their own children and I admire their dedication to their children’s education.

Another option is the Montessori approach. In these classrooms, you will find children of mixed ages learning through concepts and the use of natural materials. It is very much a child-centered education system based on observations of the children. Designed to encourage children to follow their instincts and interact with the environment around them.

Looking to Europe

Our education system requires some serious reform and reorganisation. But where do we look for this inspiration, it has to be to Europe, specifically Finland. They have one of the top education systems in Europe. A system where children have no formal education until the age of 7. Children attend preschool, kindergarten, and daycare that is free to those on low income and heavily subsidised for others.

The Finnish education system is based on learning through play. This is an aspect that British schools have tried to replicate in the form of the Foundation Phase for younger school children. Creativity and a ‘joy of learning’ are at the heart of their curriculum and they are not ashamed of this at all. Teachers are well trained and respected by both parents and politicians alike. There is no OFSTED-school inspection but instead, they use a system of self-assessment.

Broken or not?

To say that our education system is failing seems to be an exaggeration of the truth. Yes, our education system has problems, faults, and issues. But at the end of the day, we as parents should be taking responsibility for teaching our children the basic building blocks such as reading, numbers, and writing. However, it appears this may not be the case.

Does our education need a change of pace and to be brought into this new decade, of course it does. We need something fresh and different that helps create a generation of free thinkers and entrepreneurs who aren’t afraid to make mistakes and fail. This I believe is the only way that we as a country will be able to succeed in this world!!!

New Year new beginnings

New Year new beginnings

New Year, new beginnings for parents that are far important than losing weight, dropping a coffee a day or pledging to go to the gym every day!

New Year, new beginnings, the time for change. It’s the time of year when everyone is thinking about big changes for the New Year ahead. These range from losing that baby weight, starting a new business or going back to the gym and sticking to it. But with all that’s going on in the world are these really the most important changes that we can make as parents. New Year, new beginnings need to be different for parents. They need to start off the New year less stressed and more focused!

New year new beginnings for parents

We are all so busy, rushing from one thing to the next. Never is this truer than for parents who are trying to juggle work, school, childcare, and 6 million other things. So at a time when we are pledging to make big changes for the year that lays ahead, where exactly should those changes be made to make the greatest difference to our lives. There are a few things that we can do as parents to ease ourselves into the new year.

New Year resolution of time

Find some time in the day, that you can give your child or children your undivided attention. That means no multi-tasking, no phones, no laptops, no distractions. This doesn’t have to be anything elaborate, it could be your bedtime routine, family dinner, walking the dog or playing on the floor. Try to find time in the day when you are both at your best and can really enjoy each other’s company. This time should be the best part of your day to strengthen your bond.

Let the small things slide

Our little people often test our patience to breaking point. This is not personal, it’s just their way of finding their way through this minefield of a life. So take a deep breath or several depending on what kind of day you have had and breathe! Try to get down to their level and understand their confusion and frustration. Help them to calm down and identify how they are feeling. If you try to relate you stand more chance of connecting with them and helping them find a solution. This should in turn help to lessen these outbursts and can be turned into a fantastic learning opportunity.

Don’t compare yourself to other parent’s

We are so committed to ensuring that our children have the best lives that we are often unkind to ourselves. But why wouldn’t we when we are bombarded with the lives of “perfect” parents on every form of social media. It’s hard to not compare ourselves but what we don’t see are the lives behind those photographs. What we need to do is stop adding those pressures to our already extremely stressful lives and concentrating on the things we may or may not be doing.

Instead, we need to focus on are WE doing everything that WE can to ensure our children live happy, healthy and productive lives. Priority needs to be given to building great relationships both with your partner and your children.

New Year, new beginnings…

Looking forward to a new year is so important. But being kind to ourselves as we navigate the worries, stresses and endless feelings of never quite getting this parenting thing right is the most important!!!!!

Naughty Behaviour May Not Be The Issue

Naughty Behaviour May Not Be The Issue

When your little darling suddenly transforms into a raging, disobedient whirlwind we might be too quick as parents to classify this as simply naughty behaviour.   There may be something going on however, that you as a parent, need to help sort out.

Screaming For Attention

My son is in Year 1 at school. He’s a summer baby and is therefore only just 5-years-old. One evening, last week, my little ray of sunshine came home and proceeded to swipe all the heads off my geraniums with a spade. Excellent! He completely massacred them. It was an intentional act to upset me (because he has spent the summer looking after them as he knows they make me happy). He then began pushing his 3-year-old brother about and continued throughout the evening being aggressive and disobedient. He was obviously screaming for attention.

Why The Change In Behaviour?

I was concerned about why there was a change in behaviour, but I needed him to know that what he had done was wrong. He lost ten stars on his sticker chart for the naughty behaviour and was made to apologise to his brother. I then backed up the ‘punishment’ with lots of positive 121 attention and asked him if everything was all right at school. He mentioned the names of a couple of kids who were chasing and teasing him. Now, I’m a reasonable mother (I like to think!) and understand that it is hard to obtain an accurate picture from a little boy who can’t remember what he had for school lunch that day. However, convinced that something must be a bit askew, I decided to ask his teacher for a quick chat. I’d email the school and arrange an appointment.

A sudden change in your child’s behaviour should always raise alarm bells. Metamorphosing from a sweet, happy child into a raging, spade wielding crazy boy cannot be explained as simple naughty behaviour. There had to be a reason – nothing had changed at home; thus, it was natural to assume something was happening at school.

He had no issue going into school, as usual, the following day. However, at pick-up time, he said: “Today was a good day as no-one tried to hurt me.” I turned on my heel and went straight back into school. I abandoned my ‘email the school’ approach within a split-second, and I sat down with his teacher there and then.

Nip It In The Bud

His teacher was lovely and declared that all playground staff would be informed.  Extra care would be taken to ensure my child was happy at playtimes and that no misdemeanours were occurring. She assured him that he must speak to an adult whenever he felt concerned. I felt 100% reassured and glad I decided to ‘nip it in the bud.’ It might be just an incidence of the game of ‘chase’ going wrong, or maybe a case of my boy being too sensitive.  But it could be bullying, and thus, quite rightly, everyone needs to be vigilant. No child should worry about playtimes at school, especially when they are only just 5-years-old.

All young children go through periods where they are unhappy or generally worried about something that they cannot verbalise. It is our job, as parents, to be aware that when they act out of character.  The resulting naughty behaviour may actually mean something is probably a little wrong in their world and they do not know how to handle it. The teacher advised my little one how to say no to being chased in the playground and what to do when something was happening that he didnt like. I backed it up by telling him that he should always talk to her if he were feeling worried or sad. 

Determine If Your Child Is Feeling Worried

Here’s a list of other behaviours that your child might display if they are feeling worried about something:

  • Becoming withdrawn
  • Hesitance or refusal to go to nursery/school
  • Being clingy
  • Crying more than usual
  • Showing irritability and moodiness

Looking At The Bigger Picture

My son needed me to step in and help him out, and I know that he was happy that I did. In his head, there was a big issue, but I had made it go away. If I had reacted to the geranium swiping naughty behaviour by yelling and had not looked at the bigger picture, I believe I would have been coming home the next night to smashed up toys, more dead plants and general disobedience. More importantly, my son would still have been unhappy, worried and upset.

Next time your child transforms into a raging machine or a clingy kid, think about why. Then, don your super-hero cape and sort it out for them, because that’s what we are here to do.

Nursery, Are You Ready To Let Go of Your Toddler?

Nursery, Are You Ready To Let Go of Your Toddler?

Releasing our little ones into the big world can seem daunting, but nursery is often a realm of positivity, happiness and wonderment.


The Nursery Visits

I visited nursery after nursery. They all came ‘highly recommended’. The thumbs-up came from friends with happy, well-adjusted kids, so I expected to find a setting for my son without any issue. Wrong! I saw six childcare places in total. With each visit, I became more disheartened. None of them felt right – there was always a small something that didn’t sit right with me. In the end, I gave up. Some nurseries seemed too chaotic, others too dull and non-engaging. I thought one was dirty, and another had miserable staff. Maybe I caught them on a bad day; perhaps not. I was not prepared to take the risk.

There Was No More Delaying It

I kept my two-year-old at home with me for another year. But then, of course, came the time to start hunting again. Well before he had turned three-years-old, I felt that he needed much more than I could continue to offer him at home.

He was ready to go on ‘bear hunts’, to build bubble machines in the sunshine and to make and fly a kite on a Tuesday morning. Playing in mud kitchens, regardless of the weather, and to learn some phonics made him happy. He was eager for interactive play with a bunch of friends. I knew it was time to introduce him to the joys of building a ‘home corner’ out of boxes and helping to paint the living room wall with fifteen other three-year-olds. Making boats to go on imaginary adventures in, exploring healthy and unhealthy food choices as part of a group and playing on interactive tables were all awaiting him. It was time to start discovering the big world for himself, and I knew I had to find a way to let him do it.

I Struck Gold

I visited one nursery and struck gold.

It was not a nursery I had seen previously. No one had recommended it, and we knew no one that attended. It was perfect. I knew straight away that this particular nursery was the right place for my boy. My gut instinct felt satisfied!

The Journey At Nursery 

Exactly one year ago, my son began his new adventure. It was expensive until we received the 30-hour funding from the government. When he started, he did not talk (perhaps the result of being the youngest of four), and he refused to eat pretty much anything that wasn’t sweet. He still wore nappies in the day and loved nothing more than his dummy. Fast forward one year and he speaks beautifully, is very happy and understands so much about the world around him and his place within it. He speaks a little French, loves a bit of ‘Pyjama Drama’ and is very partial to some Spanish frittata or spicy couscous for lunch! Surprisingly he quit dummies and nappies within the first month of starting, and his progress has been quite astonishing. He skips into ‘school’ (as he calls it) with a big smile, every day.

Take Your Time And Be Selective

Each setting is different, as are our kids. My boy would have felt out of his depth in a vast, bustling nursery and unhappy in one that was too strict. However, for another child, they could have been the absolute perfect choices. Trusting YOUR gut instinct, as a parent, is the best judge of what is right for your child. Of course, if I had needed to work when he was two-years-old, I would have continued searching for the place that we eventually found.

The Benefits of A Nursery

Pre-school education is a choice. In my case, it has provided my son with so much happiness and confidence and is preparing him brilliantly for big school. He knows how to wait his turn and how to share, the importance of being kind, respectful and having good manners. He’s learnt patience and that feeling of utter pride at accomplishing something new. He is able to stand in front of a group of kids and explain a story or describe a character. We discovered his love to draw, paint, make glorious art, spell his name, remember songs and actions and put on a bit of a show. He understands all about the weather and how to plant a seed and watch it transform into a beautiful flower with care, attention, water and sunshine.  He has learnt we are all different and to be tolerant of those differences.

I could never have given him all that.

Kids Are So Capable

When you find the right setting for your child, truly marvellous things can happen. It’s hard to release them into the ‘wild’ of the big world where they have to manage without you, but when you do, you realise just how capable they are and that their potential is limitless.

Parental Guilt, Do You Feel Guilty As A Parent?

Parental Guilt, Do You Feel Guilty As A Parent?

Being overwhelmed by parental guilt is something every parent has experienced. But it doesn’t have to be this way.

I Quite My Job

‘Face-Timing’ my son on his first-ever day at school was not the same as being there. I was overwhelmed with emotions, and they were mostly negative ones. My son, of course, was fine but I felt like the worst mother on the planet. I wasn’t even there to collect him, and so it continued, morning and evening, for the next three weeks. Then I quit my job. (See my article on Work Life Balance) The struggle was real. I was torn between paying the bills and being there for all the small, everyday things. When I announced that I was going to be staying at home and he wouldn’t need to go to morning/after-school club anymore, he cried. Not with relief, but because he loved club. Excellent – I hadn’t even seen that coming!

Parental Guilt? I Think I know Why

No matter what we do, we feel (needlessly) guilty for just about everything it would seem. And I think I know why. It’s not because of the decisions we make, but rather because of the plethora of information online and the prevalence of advice and opinion ‘out there’ that we are in a permanent state of self-doubt. I’ve thought about this a lot and trust me, you have no need to feel guilty. If I had carried on working, my son would have been absolutely fine. He loved club, he loved life and was very happy and settled. The point was that I wanted to be with him and not somewhere else. I thought I felt guilty, but actually I was feeling sad, and I had a terrible case of the ‘fear of missing out.’ It was more about me than him. There was absolutely no need to suffer the anguish of parental guilt for working full-time.

The Difference Today

I have two grown-up children and two small children. The first two came along in a social media free world, and the second two are growing up in the digital age. I was a happy parent, raising the first two. I made decisions and never remember feeling parental guilt over any of them, probably because I had no real clue what everybody else was doing and never sought any opinion either. Fast forward 15 years and I question myself over everything. Social media and the abundance of opinion and advice has a lot to answer for. The internet is a fantastic ‘information-finding’ resource, but social media sites can facilitate the judging of parents and creating anxiety over every decision one makes. Should they be allowed to eat in front of the TV? Or even be watching TV? Should I enrol them in more after-school activities or less? Am I terrible for letting them sleep in my bed? What’s my parenting technique and is it the right one? So many things to worry about and feel like a guilty parent over! I mean, are they getting enough mental stimulation, and should I be playing with them more? Do I need to raise my kids as gender-neutral, or is it ok to dress my boys in blue and my girls in pink? It’s so confusing, and we end up feeling guilty about the most ridiculous things. STOP.

Enough of the Parental Guilt Already – Trust Your Instincts!

Enough of the guilt, mums and dads. Trusting your own instinct on what is right, or wrong, for your family is the most important rule you can live by. What is the best decision for one child or parent is not the best for another. Every situation is unique, and therefore, all our choices will be unique too. Parenting is a tough enough gig without heaping on a load of unnecessary guilt. So, go ahead and use the internet to help you make decisions. Learn more, understand issues and weigh up the pros and cons of a given situation. But don’t feel guilty once you’ve made a decision. If that decision doesn’t work out, then change it as I did. This goes for everything, including much-debated issues like whether or not to breast-feed, have a C-section, raising vegan kids or choosing to home-school. Ignore what everyone else thinks is right and do what’s best for YOU and YOUR child. Staying at home has proven to be the right decision for us. I am happier, and a happy mummy equals a happy family. Being happy is what matters and, you can’t be happy if you’re perpetually feeling guilty. So stop!

Do Your Kids Get Too Much Screen Time?

Do Your Kids Get Too Much Screen Time?

Screen Time – We live in digital times where the use of mobile phones is prevalent. But how much screen time is too much as far as our kids are concerned?

The Distraction

We have all done it. We have all, at one time or another, handed our child a mobile phone or tablet to distract them with some screen time so that we can get on with doing something. I am unaware of any parents who have not. It’s easily done when you need to take a business call, feed the dog, load the dishwasher or simply take a break. It’s always really easily done when it feels like World War 3 is breaking out in your home, and it seems like the only way to get some peace. Parenting is hard, and sometimes we just need a break.

How Much Screen Time Is Too Much?

Despite this, we are all aware, as parents, that too much screen time can be detrimental to our toddlers and young children. But how much screen time is too much, and why is it an issue? Let’s look at the negative impact of ‘too much’ screen time:

  • Inactivity – which can lead to obesity, lack of imagination and creative play as well as a decreased attention span
  • Performance issues – lower scores in memory, language and thinking tests
  • Inappropriate content – if left alone with devices for too long, children can stumble across content that creates confusion and emotional problems
  • Digital addiction – which can lead to cognitive damage (structural changes in the brain)
  • Poor sleep quality and duration

Given that the above list appears to present a scary picture of the impact of screen time, what should we, as parents, be allowing our children to do? A recent study was published in the UK by the RCPCH – The Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health (2019). ‘High screen time’ is determined as 2 hours or more per day, and at that level, detrimental physical, social and mental effects were observed. The report also concluded that while there was no actual safe level of screen time, that not all screen time could be perceived as ‘harmful. The full report can be found here, and it is an enlightening read.

Screen Time Stats

The digital world can help children learn, explore and develop skills that they will require in later life, such as how to manipulate devices and technology. Currently, according to Internet Matters, statistics show that in the 0-5 years old category:

  • 36% play games online for up to 6 hours per week
  • 80% watch cartoons
  • 69% use tablets
  • 52% are online 9 hours per week

Set The Boundaries

There are no concrete, screen time guidelines (apart from the fact that 2+ hours per day is damaging). It is, therefore, up to us as parents to set clear boundaries for our children. Ideas include:

  • Device-free times – to include meal times and bedtime
  • Watching high, quality content together
  • Setting an excellent example with your own mobile/tablet use
  • Splitting online time between passive watching and interactive learning

For my part, I allow my kids to watch cartoons on my tablet. They are 3 and 5 years old. However, I choose the content, and the time is limited to weekends. We also have rules about phones at the table and in the bedroom. Definitely not allowed.

The Alternatives To Screen Time

Providing your child with lots of other stimulating, non-digital, activities pays dividends. Creative play, reading, crafts, sports and music are all ideas of exciting activities that your children can participate in to occupy themselves. As they become older, they will demand more screen time and mobile phones of their own. Next comes social media, the PlayStation or Xbox (or whatever new device will be invented in the future). Creating good habits now, while they are young, will set them in good stead for when they become teenagers.

When All Is Said And Done

I am as guilty as the next parent for using the phone as an unpaid babysitter, but given the information contained in this article and the findings of the RCPCH report, I will, in future, be much more mindful of doing this. When all is becoming a little crazy in your house, and you feel like whipping out your phone for some peace and quiet, maybe grab some play-d’oh or some slime instead. Infinitely messier, but definitely healthier.

Baby Number 2 Arrives, Here’s 5 Things what to Expect

Baby Number 2 Arrives, Here’s 5 Things what to Expect

Baby number 2 has arrived on planet earth and you are not sure what this means for your set-up at home? Things may alter a little…


It goes without saying having your first child is a life-changer. Your focus, your new-found love for a child; your relationships, everything. But what about when baby number 2 arrives? Surely you have the experience and know-how on how this works, right? Your home dynamic is about to alter slightly.

Changing A Nappy Is Like Riding A Bike

First and fore-most, the nitty-gritty of looking after a new-born are the nappy changes and feeding. Your first experience of this with baby number 2 will either lure you into a false sense of security because you mastered the nappy changes with the first; or you will become unstuck and restart your nappy changing techniques for the second. Either way, the smell and the chaos nappy changes and feeding can bring remains universal for all babies.

Eldest Behaviour May Change When Sybling Number 2 Arrives

When they meet their brother or sister for the very first time, they will be experiencing a whole host of emotions – regardless of their age. They may be overly excited and wish to be at the forefront of everything related to the baby. They may opt for going the other way by not really showing any real interest. This doesn’t mean they hate the idea of having a sibling, they may be simply trying to understand and perceive what it means to them. Some may show initial interest, and then get bored and carry on as if nothing has happened. A sibling response will be unique them. Their little brains just need a little time to process the event that baby number 2 has arrived. After all, they will be meeting a life-long friend for the very first time.

Baby number 2 will copy everything

Like all kids, they attempt to copy or mimic most things they see in front of their eyes. Even more so for a new arrival who has a sibling to look up to in more ways than one. As time goes by, their personality begins to shine through, so you may notice typical sibling behaviour. They may copy certain behaviour such as making negative noises when something doesn’t go their way. This is unavoidable. They are simply observing what they see and learning how the world operates – even if it means screaming when there is no pudding! It is therefore up to you as a parent to look for opportunities to offer simple explanations and begin boundary making.

Your feelings toward them both will be unique for each

When baby number 2 arrives, your recollections of the first arrival will resurface. Your world will revolve around the baby. And the eldest will see this. Feelings toward them both may seem strange at times. Let’s be honest, baby’s can be boring at times. they just sleep, feed and poo. They have no personality. And yet your love for them is raw. It is new. You are learning how to love a child all over again. And that can be beautiful. Your love for the eldest continues to grow but be aware they may not see it this way as your attention will be split.

Time will be divided…sometimes unequally between the two

Your eldest will undoubtedly possess a bundle of personality; more so than a boring, sleeping baby; you have also known them longer. As things settle a little and a routine is established you may notice that you spend more time with the eldest. Maybe mummy is busy bonding with baby number 2 and you feel left out and end up spending a disproportionate amount of time with the eldest. This isn’t a problem at all. Remember that your eldest still has emotional and physical needs which require attention. They need to continue to play, to experience childhood. They may be confused as to why mummy and daddy are giving this baby all the attention. You may notice they may want you to play with them more. You would probably rather go play tag in the garden than change the baby’s 5th nappy in an hour. So, go and play with them. The trick is to know when to say no, so you can tend to baby number 2 and the eldest needs to learn to accept this – and they will.